Q&A with Arjan de Kock



Arjan De Kock

Age? 25
Year’s climbing? 16

How did you start climbing?
Antonie van Heerden (teacher at the school) started a team at the local school, Hoerskool Hexvallei

Where are you from?
Hex Vally in the Western Cape

What work do you do?
Family Business, Farming Table Grapes

You’ve predominantly been a Sport Climber, when did you start taking bouldering seriously and why?
I never take it seriously, climbing is just fun, life is good!

Earlier this year you spent a few weeks in Spain mostly climbing sport routes that were way above your normal redpoint grade… what was the reasoning behind trying such hard routes?
I wanted to do the routes of course, some days they didn’t feel so difficult. I just didn’t manage to do them. I like to be free of grades, just climb what I want to get on, no matter the intensity.

Have you done any hard Sport climbs this year?
Not really, hardest is 8a+, and that was a onsight, no hard redpoints

You’ve been ripping through Rocklands this year, tell us how the season has been for you?
I got to Rocklands in May, I was suppose to go back to Europe to go sport climbing, but I just ended up staying! just love it here, I cant even get myself to go home for a weekend.

Who you been climbing with recently?
Caroline Sinno and some French climbers from Grenoble.  Climbed a bit with Paul Robinson, mmm… you don’t have to be famous to have good energy.

What are your ideal weather conditions for climbing?
Sending weather, come rain, storm or heat, its always good weather for something


Arjan on Golden Shadow

Do you find it more motivating to climb with people who are better or worse than you and why?
If you are strong as a bull, but complain and nag like a little girl, the psyche just dries up and then I’d rather climb alone. I love to climb with people who love climbing… its all about the energy, Danie Moolman has really good energy… he truly is happy for me when we have a session.

Do you see differences between SA and overseas climbers?
Dunno… this is a trap, we are all the same!

What has made such a difference to your climbing?
Climbing as much as humanly possible

See the thing I wrote on the Follow the Psyche Blog, things like Kitesurfing/Surfing/Mountain Biking and all that stuff helps.

What is your Schedule?
Wake up early

Golden Shadow, Rocklands

Arjan on Golden Shadow (8B+/V14) Photo by Marinus Coetzee

Do you diet?
I lost 7kg in 3years, if you can pinch fat anywhere on your midsection, you could probably loose it!

Do you have a routine?
Screaming every morning to wake everyone up, try to be hyper active

Do you warm up? I feel weak warming up, so I try to stretch the nerves and Theraband exercises and play with a powerball on the walkin.

You managed to onsight Green Mamba (8A+), what enabled you to onsight the route (what was different about it)?
I try to Flash most things I get on… most of the time you don’t succeed.  Its a hit and miss thing, I try to move confidently and just go ‘balls to the wall’.  On Green Mamba things just worked out for me, plus Benji gave me good beta for it.

What gets you physced?
Things that are good, water/wind/rocks/friends

With the rock being so hard on the skin at Rocklands, how many days are you able to climb for without taking a break?
The rock is not so bad here.

Favourite problem of this season?
Mmm, maybe the Vice and Mooiste Meisie

Toughest problem of the season?
Maybe Derailed, it took me the longest to do.

Arjan De Kock on Amandla, Rocklands

Arjan De Kock on Amandla (8C/V15) Photo by Marinus Coetzee

Where else have you been climbing this year?

Favourite Sport area?

2nd favourite bouldering area to Rocklands?
Some places off the map

Will you continue to Sport climb?
Not for now, maybe do Oudtshoorn and short sport routes. But I want to climb everything.

Do you do any other sports?
Kitesurfing, Surfing, Skydiving, Mountain Biking, Swimming.

What do you do in your spare time?
Take some photos, maybe some video, hang out with mates, most from Stellenbosch

What is the biggest Epic you’ve had?
Not tying my knot properly on Two To Win/Streetfighter last year, almost killed myself… what an idiot!

Who is your hero?
Prob Fred Nicole, he’s just a legend, but locally Sean Marsch is a King, he embodies the psyche…

What’s your best pickup line?
Prob my cooking, maybe the honey mustard orange glazed snoek, although the lady friend does not eat fish, so prob not that!

Tea or Coffee?
Both has their place.

Arjan de Kock

Panama 8A, Rocklands

Any progress/plans on the Brave Cave in Du Toits Kloof?
I have friends that put up lines, I will try them soon enough…

What projects are you working (Boulder / Sport)

Amandla and Sky, maybe Monkey’s Wedding

How far do you think you are from 8C?
Maybe a couple of tries, who knows…

What is your favourite food?
Indian food

how much do you weigh?
67 / 68 kilograms, now I’m a little fatter cause my girl eats a lot of cookies and chocolates – she’s not fat though 🙂

This last weekend, Arjan Onsighted Captain Graffiti (8A) at Topside

Arjan’s 8a.nu score is now at 11198 ranking him as 5th position

Related Articles:

Also check out Follow the Psyche Blog, where Arjan and friends write about their recent adventures


2 Responses to Q&A with Arjan de Kock

  1. mark scheepers Oct 8, 2010 at 1:35 pm #


    I’ve been commissioned to write and article for Destiny Man magazine on someone who has chosen a unique or unusual way to get fit. I need to telephonically interview them for the magazine and it is quite urgent. Is there anyone that fits this criteria and would be willing to be interviewed regarding getting fit through climbing.

    Mark Scheepers

    083 350 3858

  2. Paul Oct 3, 2013 at 5:17 pm #

    Mark: I like how you say Climbing is an unusual way to get fit.

    It’s so backwards that 🙂 running on a machine that doesn’t take you anywhere, or lets you see anything (absorb fresh air) and doing silly exercises inside a man-made concrete room full of weird contraptions and machines isn’t the unusual way to get fit…

    how consumed the masses are… how backwards.

    Cracks me up every time.

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